Beth Jeans Houghton and the Hooves of Destiny Interview
Due to some incredibly annoying background noise that was undetected at the time of the interview, the audio I recorded for this interview turned out to be unusable to all but the highly trained ear.
However, all is not lost as I have written up my interview with Beth Jeans Houghton and Ed Blazey, who plays trumpet, vocals, guitar and drums in her band the Hooves of Destiny. After being told that I was free to ask “anything”, I began fairly tamely by asking about the Hooves of Destiny, who were not on the posters for their earlier gig in October 2011. This as it turns out was entirely the marketing peoples fault. “We’ve been a band for over four years now and it’s only just recently that people have actually started calling us by our real name” says Houghton but as Blazey pointed out there are a lot of words in the band name and there is only so much that you fit on one poster. I moved swiftly onto things that students hold close to their heart – cheap food. So exclusively for Fuse FM here is…
Beth Jeans Houghton and Ed Blazey’s Favourite Improve Meals and Food Buying Tips: If they work on tour they can work for students!
1. Rice Noodles: so quick and super healthy. Fry them in olive oil, add garlic, spring onions and add smoked salmon. They takes about 5 minutes to cook and taste amazing.
2. Avocadoes: you only need to eat half of one a day. “But don’t go to Morrisons because they are a rip off in there” – Blazey.
3. Go to farmers market or Indian stores and stock up in bulk on healthy food. “It’s always cheaper, its better food and also the experience is so much more enjoyable” Beth Jeans Houghton.
4. Sheep’s brain has got a lot of protein and its cheap –Beth’s grandma used to feed it to her aunt.
Currently on tour supporting the Dum Dum Girls in France, Houghton has recently changed her diet to be “very specific”. “I used to get irritated people who were sugar-free, wheat-free and all that but I actually feel much healthier than I ever have,” she says, “It’s very difficult to eat healthy on tour, it’s so tempting to just get a kebab”. Blazey continues “We don’t eat before we go on stage because it makes us feel very heavy but then you’re trying to find food at 1am and fast food can be the only option”.
They have however enjoyed touring - “Manchester has been a highlight every time we come here – industry wise, Manchester and London have the stress placed on them as the important ones but there is a huge difference between playing in London and Manchester. Come here [Manchester] and people are here to enjoy the gig and have fun but in London it feels like they are just there to be cool” says Blazey.
The first EP from Beth Jeans Houghton came out in 2008 and was quickly bracketed into the nu-folk scene with Laura Marling but she then refused to sign to a record label until her album was finished. “What people don’t realise that when a band is signed to a label while they are recording the label people will come in and say can you cut this song or can you change the lyrics here and I’m not into that at all. They can have it as it is or not at all” she says, “I was very lucky to have found Mute who were happy with it when it was finished”. The band has “slightly kind of not been paying attention” to the reviews but they are excited to finally have it out. Luckily there is nothing to worry about - “Yours Truly Cellophane Nose” is a strong album, sort of like a more eccentric Florence & the Machine and is much better for it, with folky numbers fitting easily alongside more psychedelic, expansive ones.
The band have been forming some loose, general plans for the future as well. “We want to record the next record in LA and I want to live there as well – I just love it, I keep going back,” says Houghton, “I always used to have this thirst to travel before I went to LA but now any time I have off instead of wanting to go to new places I just want to go to LA”. I was then quizzed on whether I had been there and my thoughts so I offered my slightly less favourable opinion on LA (it’s a bunch of suburbs connected by motorways but it does have some nice bits). However, Houghton pointed out a major advantage Los Angeles has over everywhere in the UK is that “You can go outside, walk to a coffee shop and past five palms trees in the blazing sun”, a point I had to concede.
We finished up the interview talking about our favourite animals (Blazey: giraffes or bees, Houghton: dogs or sea urchins) and concluding that David Attenborough was everyone’s favourite granddad. Beth Jeans Houghton and Ed Blazey were lovely people to have for my first ever interview and I would seriously recommend checking out the debut album from Beth Jeans Houghton and the Hooves of Destiny, or at least listen to Dodecahedron (my favourite song from the record).